Travel is a teacher

I wrote a touch note to a friend the other day, and I sent a couple of photos of her and I in the back on a crammed mini bus in Central America 4 years ago. I remember it being SO uncomfortable. The aircon didnt work, so it was a very sticky 13 hour bus ride. Majority of the 10 passengers were also European or spoke Spanish, which kind of annoyed me too(shouldn’t have)- not being able to converse with anyone, but I still had my friend! I just remember thinking it was torture… oh how dramatic we can be in the moment! What I’d give to have one of those experiences this year, as I know none of us will be having them for quite sometime.

Things, feelings and situations always seem so much more hightened while we are going through them. And it makes sense. Nothing seems ‘worse’ at the time, but oh…. there will always be so much worse.

Something to take with us the next time we lose a job, go through a pandamic, end a friendship or persperate in the back of a bus in another country. Our minds really are so much tougher than we realise. It’s hard not to over dramatise situations, but it’s something to work on.

Hope everyone has a wonderful Thursday!

PS: the featured image on this post is from this morning, how bloody gorgeous! What a way to wake up.

6 Tips for your early 20’s

  1. Relocate to the other side of the world

This is something I did when I was 20. Flew solo to Canada with a two year visa in hand and everything I owned in a pack- and its still one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. I learned how to be independent and rely solely on myself. I learned that I could live off literally no money(but still had money to take a trip every couple months and party a few nights a week… how?!) I learned to put myself out there and start a conversation first because well- what do we have to lose right? And it also taught me how lucky I am to have the family I have. The distance definitely made me appreciate them more, which I needed at that time in my life. ‘Distance makes the heart grow fonder’. I am a firm believer that age is just a number BUT I do think that making a move like this is easier with zero ties/responsibilities/kids/mortgages. Very do-able in your early twenties! I also met my partner overseas that I am still with today. Moving abroad changed my life in many ways πŸ™‚

2. Be a ‘yes’ person

This really can apply to anything. Say yes to taking time off work and going on that road trip. Say yes to a narcotic that you want to try. Say yes to trying a very strange food. We rarely regret saying ‘yes’. If anything as we age i think we’ll have regrets saying ‘no’ to wild and wonderful opportunities that are thrown our way.

3. Move your body

We probably over indulge in a number of guilty pleasures in our 20’s, as were still figuring out our bodies, our metabolisms are most likely at their peak and we also DGAF all that much. But MOVING whether its a workout/jog/walk/hike/swim in the ocean etc. is again something that we don’t and wont regret. As we get older our bodies tend to decline, so lets use this energy wisely now. We are so lucky to be young and healthy. Bounce and backflip around because I doubt we’ll be doing anything remotely active when we are in retirement homes.

4. Go skinny dipping

I hope that I’m skinny dipping when I’m 70. It’s thrilling and fun and feels so free! Our bodies aren’t getting any younger, so be proud of what you have now! Let yo freak flag fly.

5. Don’t overwork

I have been the queeeeen of working as little as possible the past five years. I’ve always made just enough to fund food, fun and flights. That’s all I’ve really desired up until the beautiful year of 2020, #teamnowork. But seriously- I don’t look back at my time and think ‘wow I wish I worked more’ heck no! We are going to be working all of our lives peeps. Absolutely choose exploring, meeting people, having boozy long lunches > doing overtime.

6. Tell your loved ones that you love them

We can’t tell people enough how much we love and appreciate them. The limit does not exist!(Mean girls ;). When they’re gone, holding back our words and feelings is a regret we’ll have! When you love someone shout it from the damn rOoOoOfToPs. Tell your loved ones how you feel, compliment them and hug them. There is nothing more important than human connection and letting people know they are loved. Express yo’self.

This one time… in Guatemala

The only(known) hot waterfall in the world that flows into a body of cool water. This was incredible and needed after so many cold ‘suicide’ showers

A few years ago i flew to Guatemala city for a month with a mate I was living with in Canada. We basically had return flights booked and not much else. Was such a great way to do it as it was low season when we visited in October. Guatemala was a country I didn’t even know existed until we found cheap flights one day.

Guat’s had really good coffee, super friendly little(emphasis on both friendly and little lol) locals, it was so lush and green(reminded me of being back at home in the tropics!) and a VERY cheap country to travel. Wasn’t for the faint hearted though. It got hot. It is an extremely poor country. There wasn’t really a garbage system and go to transport options are basically busses(we had a 13 hr trip one day, never again). Wouldn’t change a thing though, such a memorable experience.

Blissing out after leaving the start of Canadian winter behind for black sand beaches and 30degree weather

My friend and I had previously done a bit of travel before this trip, but we weren’t oblivious to the fact that we were in what would most likely be considered a third world country. We were going to see some sh*t…

After being in town one day, we decided we’d attempt to walk back to our accommodation(a lot further than we had anticipated) and it started to get a little dark. A Toyota prado(boujee) pulled up beside us and offered us a lift, of course we said yes- it was a free ride with a stranger in a foreign country! Be crazy not to(wouldn’t recommend ppl). We get in and this local 50+ man is smiling but also shaking his head at the same time. We couldn’t really converse as not many locals knew English and we had minimal Spanish. Our driver started saying “arma, arma” which we knew was gun in Espanol… he literally ends up pulling this weapon from under his seat and waves it around. Our hearts sank… He could have killed us then and there. Turned out he was just warning us that it wasn’t a super safe area and lots of people were armed. Makes sense, it was Central America after all. He dropped us to our destination and we couldn’t stop thanking him and attempting to put Quetzal’s(local currency) in his console. He wasn’t having a bar of it and didn’t want a cent of our money. What a legend.

Eating the best homemade hummus and reading communal journal entries at a local cafΓ© in Lake Atitlan

After 478739 bus rides, we were sooooo over it. Probably myself more than my mate lol! We stopped at a hostel on the water for a cold brew. We ended up meeting an older bloke named Guy. Considering he 1) spoke English 2) was Canadian 3) had a bloody infectious personality- we ended up really getting along. He informed us he was headed to Belize in a few days via the water. Offered us two seats on a boat not a bus, we were in. Syd(mi amigo) and I didn’t actually end up telling our families what we’d decided just errrr… incase things went south. I texted my siblings and my parents a short and sweet ‘love you’ before we left the mainland as we didn’t have any service on the boat for four days. Not going to lie I was definitely nervous during the first night we had on the boat, and when I say boat it was basically a catamaran- it was bloody nice. We all had our own rooms and I made sure I locked mine. Turns out Guy was all too much fun. He’d had previous paying passengers(charged us maybe $200US, cheap) so he was super hospitable and quite the chef! We spent everyday playing music, tanning on the front nets, drinking beer and smoking joints. It was a damn wonderful time. A couple from Melbourne ended up joining us on the boat as well as a crazy Norwegian staff member/sidekick of Guy’s(shoutout Jules, Layla + Ruben) We all had a blast!

Guy is definitely yelling at us here for ‘steering wrong’ lol. Note that i apparently needed a pillow to sit on? Haha

After arriving in Belizean waters, we stopped at a very unofficial office in Ambergris Caye and handing our passports over. We got them back and headed to Caye Caulker, probably the coolest little island on earth. But that is a whole different story…

Looking back things could have gone either way, but spontaneity and taking soon to be friends up on offers like these definitely make(or break) your travels. It’s pretty crazy how much trust we can put into people we’ve briefly met, just go with your gut feeling I guess. Ended up that Guy our wild captain was in a boat accident later that year and unfortunately passed away. To think if we’d declined his proposal we wouldn’t have ended up spending a week with one of the most ridiculously insane people i’ll most likely ever come across. He was SO full of life, lived it right that’s for sure.

The whole crew. RIP mate.
Along with coffee, bananas and sugar are the main agricultural exported goods from Guatemala
Cleaning up a beach in the south west of Guatemala, El Paredon. I turned 22 this day.
All of the hammocks + corona’s

I would travel back to Guatemala 100% and cant wait to. I loved how unexpected and unpredictable the whole trip was. Made friends I’ve been lucky enough to see since, ate some really good + also really basic food, made me appreciate all of the small things we take for granted in our commonwealth countries, drank really cheap booze, picked up alot of Spanish along the way, got a good tan and most of all… HAD A BLOODY GOOD TIME!